Confessional approaches to Plumbing

We have recently had a visit from a delightful party from the Carolinas: it could hardly have been more enjoyable, the only shadow being the idiosyncratic plumbing which decided to throw a major, system-blocking airlock in the middle of their visit. Various attempts to rectify this were made before dinner, abandoned during dinner, and discussed after dinner.
At which point a certain degree of cultural conditioning came into play. All Papists present started to discuss who might be the patron saint of plumbing (S. Nicholas Owen SJ was suggested as good at constructing priestholes and therefore skilled in the building trades) and in what form of words they might best be invoked, who might be the saint of the day (the Liber Usualis was fetched and San Gennaro was dismissed as being far too busy with Naples) or which members of the choir invisible might be underemployed and therefore disposed to be helpful. The Northern Professor, who had been reading the Breviary of Aberdeen for professional reasons, suggested that S. Congan of Turriff was not only local but had probably not been invoked for centuries. The Canadian Professor countered with S. Adeltrudis who, with her convent of nuns, converted all Pomerania by force of arms.
By this time all male persons of the Reformed confessions had quietly left the room one by one. The effect was a little like the “Farewell” symphony. They cooperated, they made informed decisions, they mended the plumbing. These hero-workers returned to find the Papists around the dinner-table happily agreed that the agents of Providence had clearly identified themselves, but debating still by whose intercession they had swung into action.
It was a most wonderful visit, we all hope that they will come again as soon as occasions permit.

3 Responses to “Confessional approaches to Plumbing”

  1. Eleanor Says:

    Miss Kit is, without question, the cutest kitten I have ever seen. Only the threat of Homeland Security kept us from sneaking her off to Michigan, USA, in our hand luggage — even if she seems to be very skilled at making amazing new things happen to computers. A wonderful visit to the Deep North; thanks so much!

  2. The Barbadian Latinist Says:

    Might we be provided with the briefest summary of the life and heroic virtues of S. Congan of Turriff? It is almost certainly the case that he deserves to be better known …

  3. Jane Says:

    For the information of the Barbadian Latinist (and others):

    ‘Comgan was an Irish ruler who left his throne to become a missionary to Scotland. The village of Kirkcowan in Wigtownshire suggests the coast on which he landed (the other spelling of his name) and Kilchoan suggests work in the district of Loch Alsh. Turriff was another location where his memory lingers. A wooden statue which was believed to bear his image was taken to Edinburgh and ceremonially burned by reformers in 1600. It is not known when he died but he is believed to have travelled in Scotland in the first half of the eighth century. ‘

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